Wednesday, December 23, 2009


Christmas or what ever holiday you celebrate today has it's roots based in your childhood. At least that's how it is for me. I can remember how utterly excited we were to try and figure out what was in the various boxes under the tree!
There was mounting guesswork when a new present would mysteriously appear.  By the way the tree was this amazing aluminum perfectly A frame wonder that had a fold back pom pom at the end of each branch. The tree came in a box with numbered paper tubes that held different lengths of Mylar colored branches. The shorter ones started at the top with the longer ones at the bottom forming this Step ford like Xmas tree. The center of the tree looked like a tublar tripod with holes. Once the tree was completed assembly line style, my aunt would plug in the revolving red, blue, green and yellow wheel that changed the color of the tree every 5 seconds. The hard part was putting the tree away making sure to put the right branches in the right paper tubes. Otherwise there would be drama the next year, finger pointing  and who did it! Another memory was when I got my very own snub nose thirty eight with a Peter Gunn holster! OMG, I was the smoothest detective on the block! I must have been about 5 or 6! Oh yes, I got a Nun doll with a black and white habit the same Christmas. I LOVED that doll so much that I carried her everywhere. Imagine, wearing my snub nose under my jacket while carrying my nunn doll. That thought reveals a bit of my present personality. hmmm. Anyway, Christmas is for sharing, being with family, gratitude, forgiveness and many other wonderful times..
My question is, why not celebrate these values everyday? The reality is that it's not about buying stuff, guilt, angst, and family drama, you can get that all year round too! I say flip the switch, take 365 days and celebrate the people you love, the friendships you cherish, the gifts you were born with, your health, your freedom to choose! Take time for yourselves, be in your moment! If things are a little funky, take it one moment at a time until you can take it one day at a time. When you're done with the funky bit, cross it off your list and move on.
Thank you all for your support, your willingness to try something "NEW and Improved" and earth friendly!
I appreciate all the wonderful feed back and heart warming stories of blankets getting white again!
I'm looking forward to 20010 and all that awaits!
Feel free to drop me an email, let me know about the things that are of interest or thought provoking you would like to share. 
I wish for you all a BOUNTIFUL NEW YEAR!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Luxury for the Laundress........


Washer Wheel

Laundry  in a ghost town

Weighted Iron

Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Passing of a Matriarch

Janie Jefferson Porter
My Great aunt was the youngest of 22 children born in 1922  to Sussex and Louvenia Jefferson.
Our family name Jefferson originates from the Thomas Jefferson plantation in Virginia.Some of the Jefferson children left the south in search of better opportunities, aunt Janie settled in Chicago as a domestic until her retirement in 1977. Now you're beginning to see the tradition I speak of relating to Old School Brand Laundry Soap. You could eat off Aunt Janie's floors! She took great pride in her work much to the dismay of her children. When Aunt Janie would start to hum old negro spirituals, it was a sign that it was cleaning day! Just in case you didn't get the message that she meant business, the humming would escalate, then she would be standing outside your bedroom door announcing in the tone of a preacher that it was time to get up and get busy. You know the term, cleanliness is next to godliness! Aunt Janie was the queen of clean and mean! I think her furniture is still covered in plastic.I never understood that, because the covers never came off even for "company"! There were the good set of dishes and the everyday set? Then there was the  voice she used in the presence of company and the voice she used when we were alone. I could always tell who was on the phone by the tone of voice my aunt used.  The tone would be an octave higher for strangers like teachers or bill collectors. We kids knew when to take advantage of "company" being over by asking for something which under normal circumstances would be a "NO"! Asking in front of company would get an under the breath yes, just to get rid of us! Later we would pay dearly for the interruption.

Aunt Janie and her famous collard's
Aunt Janie lived fully her 97 years and had the privilege to vote for the first African American President in her lifetime. I can only imagine the world aunt Janie saw and experienced through Jim crow, and the civil rights movement.
The tradition continues through our sharing stories with each other and our children. Aunt Janie would approve of Old School Brand, it's all about the clean!! By the way, my aunt hung her clothes out on the line! I appreciate Aunt Janies wisdom, nurturing, and putting the fear of God in us! I think we turned out just fine!
I believe she's setting up housekeeping in heaven!